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bill fish bowl gridiron greats
Event Rules

Mercedes Benz Award
In order to be eligible for the prize, the All Tackle Florida State Record fish must be caught in the
manner prescribed by the International Game Fish Association (“IGFA”) international angling rules
as well as the State of Florida rules and regulations.

1. Eligible Species of Fish: Dolphin, Wahoo, King Mackerel and Yellowfin Tuna
2. Eligible Location: Florida waters as allowed by rules.
3. The total number of anglers eligible to participate in the prize shall not exceed
150. The first 150 entrants will only be eligible.
4. Requisite Qualifications for Prize Award
5. Fish must be eligible for and establish a new Official All-Tackle Florida State
Record weight for the specified species.
6. Fish must be caught by an official and eligible entrant during the official
tournament date and times
7. Fish must be certified as the Official All-Tackle Florida State Record for the
specified species and must be verified from the State Record Keeping

General Rules

1. The Gridiron Greats Billfish Bowl is a two-day, all-release billfish tournament.
2. All anglers must adhere to the angling rules set forth by the International Game Fish Association (www.igfa.org), and practice good sportsmanship.
3. Any violation of these rules or violation of the guidelines as published at http://www.igfa.org/PDF/InternationalAnglingRules09.pdf will disqualify a fish.
4. Any disputes will be ruled upon by the Tournament Committee and all decisions made by the Tournament Committee are final. The team that scores the most points first wins.
5. All boats must depart and return to the same dock or launch destination every day or notify Tournament Control of any dock change.

Entry Fees
1. The Gridiron Greats Billfish Bowl is a team tournament. The base entry fee is $4,500 plus sales tax for a team of six (6). The entry fee includes gift bags and social credentials for six (6) team members to attend all tournament functions and parties.
2. All teams that pre-register before December 1, 2009 are eligible for an early bird discount of 10% off the base entry fee (a savings of $450). Early registration fees must be paid in full by Dec. 1st, 2009 to receive 10% discount. All registration fees are fully refundable through Dec 1, 2009, less a $450 administrative service charge. After December 1st, 2009, registration fees are non-refundable.
3. All six (6) team members are eligible to be anglers, this includes professional captains and mates. This entry is nontransferable once the tournament begins. There can be no substitution of anglers unless approved by the Tournament Committee.
4. The base entry fee also makes the team eligible for the base tournament prize purse and to receive their names on the Gridiron Greats Billfish Bowl perpetual trophy should they win.
5. Additional social credentials to all tournament functions and parties can be purchased for $350 per person or $150 per person for the awards banquet and dinner only.
Entry Refusal
The Tournament Committee reserves the right to refuse tournament applications or entry to any prospective entrant at its sole discretion without cause.

Prize Money
1. The base entry fee monies will be awarded back to the top three teams minus tournament expenses. First place will receive 50% of the prize money, second place will receive 30% and third place will receive 20%. A net portion of the tournament proceeds will be donated to the Gridiron Greats Assistance Fund a non-profit, 501(c) 3 corporation.
2. The tournament also offers four (4) optional jackpots. All of the optional jackpot money (95 percent) will be awarded back to the top team in each individual jackpot category. Five (5%) percent will be awarded to the Gridiron Greats Charity Fund. 50% of funds will be awarded to first place and 30% to second place and third place will receive 20%.

Optional Daily Winner (2 Days) Jackpot--- $3,000
Optional Overall Winner Jackpot---$1,500
Optional Heaviest Daily Game Fish (2 days) Jackpot - $800
Optional Heaviest Overall Game Fish - $500
All-in Total ---$5,800

3. Optional Heaviest Game Fish Category. Every team entered in the base entry of the Billfish Bowl is eligible to partake in the optional daily or overall Heaviest Game Fish Category for a fee of $800 for daily and $500 for overall. All of the prize money in the Heaviest Game Fish Category (100%) will be awarded to the one team that weighs in the single heaviest game fish of the tournament. Eligible species include all tuna species, wahoo, dolphin or king mackerel. All fish must be weighed on the official tournament scale located at the Big Chill pool deck. You must weigh your game fish on the day the fish is caught. All game fish must meet a minimum weight of at least 10 pounds to count toward the Heaviest Game Fish category. All fish must be in fresh, edible condition. All weighed fish are subject to inspection and property of the tournament.

Angling Rules
The Gridiron Greats Billfish Bowl rules shall be strictly adhered to and all decisions made by the Tournament Committee are absolute and final. Any team, captain, mate(s) or anglers found in violation of any tournament rules will be disqualified from the tournament and forfeit their base entry fee.
1. Bait Catching: Teams are allowed to catch bait before lines in each day.
2. Hooking Fish: No one except the registered angler may hook a fish.
3. Fighting Fish: No one except the registered angler may touch the rod, reel or line while the fish is being fought.
4. Casting: Crew members are permitted to cast baits, however the rod and reel must be placed in a neutral position (most commonly the rod holder) and in free spool, NOT PASSED DIRECTLY TO THE ANGLER.
5. Line: The Billfish Bowl is a 20-pound tournament. All teams must fish with manufacturer-stated 20-pound-test monofilament line or less. (No bonus points are awarded for fish caught on line less than 20-pound-test.) If there are any disputes over line, the Tournament Committee can request a sample of line.
6. Double Line and Leader: The double line or leader is limited to 15 feet, and the combined length of the double line and leader shall not exceed 20 feet in length.
7. Hooks: Only non-offset circle hooks may be used on live or dead baits or lure-and-dead-bait combinations. Only single-hook rigs are permitted.
8. Rods: Each team can fish up to six rods and up to two teasers. Live Bait Teasers are allowed. Maximum of eight live baits per teaser.
9. Scoring: This is a “team” tournament with a release format. Scoring is as follows: 100 points for sailfish and 300 points for white, blue marlin, or spearfish. Although point scoring shall be on both a cumulative and individual basis for trophy purposes, the “team” accumulating the most release points first, will be judged the winner. No billfish shall be boated and brought back to the dock.
10. Fishing Times: Day One — 8 a.m. lines in to 4 p.m. lines out. Day Two — 8 a.m. lines in to 3 p.m. lines out. A fish may be fought after lines out provided it has been reported to Tournament Control prior to lines out of the water.
11. Score Cards and Release Cameras: All teams must turn in score cards to Tournament Control, located at the pool deck of the Big Chill by 6:30 p.m. on Day One and 5:30 p.m. on Day Two. It is the team’s responsibility to return properly filled out score cards each day to Tournament Control. Those score cards received after the cutoff time will not count. Video Camera memory chips need to be turned in daily.
12. Chumming: Live-bait chumming is prohibited throughout the course of this tournament. Any bait that is replaced on a line or teaser line for any reason shall be retained within the vessel. In addition, any vessel participating in this tournament shall not permit any other vessel to chum in their behalf. This does not prohibit trolling or anchoring with a chum bag in the water to attract baitfish.
13. Multiple Hookups: In the event of multiple hookups on separate lines by a single angler, all released fish can be scored and single anglers may fight multiple fish utilizing the rod holders according to IGFA rules
14. Entanglement: If a fish should be hooked to more than one line or become entangled in another line, the fouled line(s) must be cut immediately. It is the intent of this rule that the fish be fought the majority of the time on a single line.
15. Mutilated Fish: Any mutilated fish will not count. All billfish must be released.
16. Fishing Kites: Fishing with kites is permitted.
17. Sportsmanship: Non sportsmanship conduct will not be tolerated and can result in disqualification by Tournament Committee.

Release Verification

1. All billfish hook-ups and releases must be reported immediately, by VHF radio CHANNEL 78 (back up channel 80) only, and acknowledged by Tournament Control to be scored.
2. The exact number of billfish hooked up must be reported, for example, a single, a double, a triple, or a quadruple. The term “multiple” will not be acknowledged by Tournament Control.
3. In addition, the captain must report the disposition of the hook-up to Tournament Control.
4. Reports may be relayed by another boat, if the reporting boat cannot reach Tournament Control.
5. Cell phones may be used to call in hook ups and releases.
6. In order to qualify a fish as having been caught and released the following conditions must be met: The Captain, Mate or Angler touches the leader (not the double line). Cut the leader as close to the fish as possible. Touching the double line does not qualify as a release.

1. Fishing boundaries are as follows: The northerly boundary is Triumph Reef Latitude 25.48 N Longitude 80.11 W and the southerly boundary is Tennessee Light Latitude 24.45 N Longitude 80.47 W, fishing allowed within these boundaries only. The fish is allowed outside the boundaries. Your vessel is not.
2. SPA Rule. Other than catching bait with the proper permits, no vessel will be allowed to engage in any fishing activity inside of a Special Preservation Area of the National Marine Sanctuary (SPA) marked by four yellow balls. If you hook a billfish and in the course of the fight the fish enters a SPA you may not pursue it into the SPA with your vessel or your fish will be disqualified. The fish is allowed in the SPA. Your vessel is not.
3. A boat may only be changed as a result of mechanical breakdown and after approval is received from the Rules Committee.

Weather Conditions
There are no weather days, professional captain’s fish at your own risk.

Any protests concerning the tournament must be made in writing and submitted to the Tournament Committee by 7 p.m. for Day One and 6 p.m. for Day Two along with a $200 fee only refundable if the alleged violation is found to have occurred.

Billfish Video Release Verification
Teams entered in the Billfish Bowl are given HD video cameras during registration. All fish caught and released should be videoed at least once during the fight and at the time of release. Failure to video a fish will result in disqualification of that particular fish. Failure to turn in memory chip will also result in disqualification. In the event your video camera malfunctions or some other unusual circumstance results in no video, the angler may petition the Rules Committee to have his catch allowed. The Rules Committee may request special polygraph test or other corroborating evidence that would validate the catch. Basically, NO VIDEO=NO FISH. The decision of the Rules Committee is final.

1. Polygraph Tests shall be administered to the Day One, Day Two, Overall jackpot winners and the overall release winners. Polygraph tests will be administered to the captain, mate or angler, and/or others as deemed necessary by tournament officials. The team and/or team representative must pass the polygraph examination before being awarded any prize money. Individuals that are required to take the polygraph test must not have consumed any alcohol or controlled substances within eight hours prior to the test.
2. Any captain(s), angler(s) or mate(s), who fail or refuse to take this examination, by so doing, will be disqualified from winning any division of this tournament. By entering this tournament all anglers, captain(s) and mates(s) agree to abide by the results of the polygraph examination.

Disclaimer Release
1. Participants in this tournament enter at their own risk. Officials, committee members, sponsors and all persons connected directly or in directly with the operation of the Gridiron Greats Billfish Bowl, Fisherman’s Cove and the Big Chill shall be exempt from any liability for loss, damage, negligence, harm or injury suffered to any participant, entrant, sportfishing vessel, their companions, boat captains, crew members, vessels and equipment, which may occur during this tournament.
2. All anglers, captains and mates must sign the entry form on the night of the Captain’s Meeting in order to be qualified as registered, and by signing this entry
you adhere to all tournament disclaimers.
3. These rules are subject to change. A final copy of the rules will be circulated at the Captains Meeting.
4. Tournament Committee and Judges rules are final.

download pdf

February 4th - 6th 2010

Billfish Bowl
104000 Overseas Hwy
Key Largo, FL 33037
Fax 866.284.7120

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